By Michele Mitchum
University collaborations and resources raise awareness
University of Phoenix supports Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) throughout April to raise awareness on issues related to sexual assault, provide opportunities for education, and offer vital resources and support to students, faculty and staff. The National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC) theme for Sexual Assault Awareness Month 2023 is “Drawing Connections: Prevention Demands Equity.” To spread awareness, the campaign highlights systems of oppression that contribute to higher rates of sexual harassment, assault, and abuse. In addition, the campaign calls on all individuals, communities, and organizations to ignite change and build equity.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over half of women and almost 1 in 3 men have experienced sexual violence during their lifetimes. One in 4 women and about 1 in 26 men have experienced rape or attempted rape. Women and racial and ethnic minority groups experience a higher burden of sexual violence and these numbers are even higher for people of color and members of the LGBTQ+ community.
“University of Phoenix is dedicated to supporting students, faculty, and staff affected by sexual violence” states Vice President of Resolution Services and Title IX Coordinator at University of Phoenix, Bridget Beville. “Because our students are working adults and attending online, we help them get access to the resources they need, both through our office and in their own communities. Our staff responds quickly and empathetically to sexual violence disclosures, and we are pleased to continue our efforts to raise awareness about this issue not just in April, but throughout the year.”
Any student, faculty, or staff member at the University of Phoenix impacted by sexual violence, whether currently or in the past, has access to resources and support, including the Life Resource Center, which includes free, confidential services including counseling and life coaching options. The University’s Title IX Office reaches out to each student individually and provides information on resources in their local area.
In support of SAAM, University of Phoenix recognizes Denim Day on Wednesday, April 26. The Denim Day campaign, sponsored by the nonprofit organization Peace Over Violence, began in 1999, and is held on a Wednesday in April in honor of SAAM. As part of the campaign, University of Phoenix students, faculty, and staff are invited to demonstrate solidarity by joining people around the world who will wear jeans to demonstrate their support for survivors and seek to educate themselves and others about forms of sexual violence.
The National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline, 1-800-656-4673, is a referral service that connects victims of sexual assault with a local rape crisis center. Persons in need of assistance may call the hotline or access the online chat service.
For more information on Title IX and what the University does to prevent sex discrimination in all its forms, view the University’s Equal Opportunity, Harassment, and Nondiscrimination policy as well as the University’s Sexual Violence Prevention Policies volume of the Campus Safety Policies.
About University of Phoenix
University of Phoenix is continually innovating to help working adults enhance their careers in a rapidly changing world. Flexible schedules, relevant courses, interactive learning, and Career Services for Life® help students more effectively pursue career and personal aspirations while balancing their busy lives. For more information, visit phoenix.edu.